View Full Version : Split Jerk vs. Power Jerk

Patrick Steele
07-30-2014, 09:23 AM
I have been struggling with the Split Jerk for a while now. It has never felt quite right since I started working on olympic lifting movements over 3 years ago. I seem to always have my back leg straight and no matter what I've tried, I can't shake the habit. I almost always miss the weight forward.

I was struggling to Split Jerk 270 (PR: 290, haven't hit it in over a year due to time off with CrossFit, recent meet PR: 285#) yesterday when I decided I'd attempt a Power Jerk @ 270. I had never attempted a Power Jerk of over 250 to my knowledge. It was shaky, but I got it up:


My question is: Should I give up on the Split Jerk and start pursuing the Power Jerk? I realize the Power Jerk requires much more precise placement of the bar overhead and I realize that it is inherently less stable. The advantage for me (upper body being weaker, as it always has been) would be that I don't have to push it as high and also I could rely on my stronger legs (I've always been a good squatter) and possessed a great deal of flexibility.

Here is one of my last attempts at 280 Power Jerk which I think I could have recovered on a good day had I not been so tired after several attempts:

Feedback is appreciated as always. I appreciate everyone's feedback and use it to help improve my technique. :)

Blake Barnes
07-30-2014, 10:40 AM
The first video isn't working for me.

I don't see anything wrong with giving Power Jerking/Squat Jerking a shot. Having good leg strength and flexibility are key for people who do PJ/SJ.

I would incorporate some Jerk-grip OHS into your programming along with some exercises to strengthen the upper back.

Patrick Steele
07-30-2014, 11:27 AM
Blake, I was able to fix the first video...take a look and let me know what you think.

Gary Echternacht
08-01-2014, 04:52 AM
If I were you I would continue to do both power jerk and split jerk for a while. For example, if I were doing jerks for two reps, I'd do a power jerk followed by a split jerk and then reverse the order on the next set. Over time you will find one of the two more to your liking. Be patient with yourself.

Another thing you might work on is stability when the weight is overhead. One way to do that is to walk forward and backward after completing your last jerk. I like to do that on my last set. If you really want to show off (which is good) while the weight is overhead, lift one foot and tap your standing leg and repeat with the other.